Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Of Life and Chapstick

I, like so many of my female friends, am addicted to chapstick. If you can push it up a tube and slather it on your lips, I want it.

It was on Sunday afternoon while waiting for my husband to finish getting a haircut that I reached for the green tea mint eucalyptus chapstick that will cure your chapped lips and possibly cancer. It was only $1.95, stacked neatly among the myriad tubes of shampoos and conditioners that the salon sold, why shouldn't I buy it? It seemed like a simple enough purchase. But then I realized that I have so many half finished tubes of chapstick in my purse that maybe, just maybe I didn't need this particular tube.

I began thinking... is this the way we live? The "chapstick logic" can be applied to so many aspects of life: love, sex, marriage, hobbies, work. How many tubes of chapstick can we take on at one time? I suppose that if someone were to be very adventurous, they could take on a ton of different tubes, but would they be able to use each and every tube to its full potential before it expires? Probably not.
In this day and age, we are so quick to take on every little thing that life throws at us. At what point do we say "That's enough! I can't take on anything else. I need to focus on what I already have."?

What would happen if we tried couple's therapy with our significant others instead of filing for yet another divorce or ending yet another relationship prematurely? Would we be happier with one sexual partner than ten? If we actually finished the scrapbook we'd been working on for years instead of jumping to the next pretty arts and crafts project that caught our eye, how well would it have turned out? Would we have been incredibly proud of ourselves and would we have had more of a sense of accomplishment?

Having a purse full of chapstick may seem like a good idea when the tube is sitting so prettily on the counter, coaxing you into putting a whopping $1.95 on your debit card. But once you purchase that tube, you're pretty much stuck with it, and you can only use it for so long before it goes bad and needs to be thrown out. Is it really so hard to stick with what you've already committed yourself to? I bet it would feel better to actually finish one tube, than to throw away the lot of them because you spread yourself so thin that you couldn't finish any of them.

In case you're wondering, I put the chapstick back. I have three or four tubes I'm working through and I think, for now, that's plenty.


Anonymous said...

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Anonymous said...

thanks for following my blog. :)

Anonymous said...

That's a great analogy. I like the metaphor!

classroom fundraiser said...

I had to read this because I too am obsessed/addicted to chapstick!

Happy SITS Sharefest Saturday

Alethea said...

I think this is a very simple idea that rings true for many, many things. Not only did you save 2 bucks, but you saved yourself extra waste! Plus, as much as we all love chapstick, you really only need so much at one time. :-)